The LiveScribe Smartpen is one of the coolest gadgets that I’ve seen in a while. It instantly reminds me of the Fly Pentop from Leapfrog. The actual similarities are few.
The LiveScribe pen records your scribbles so that you can view them later on a PC. While that feature is cool, the ability to record audio files is what really makes this gadget shine. You can sync up the audio with your notes and select portions to playback by selecting words that that you wrote down. That way you can jot down words and use them as markers for the audio file instead of listening to the whole thing just to hear one little piece.
They really kept the user in mind when they designed the Smartpen. The software is open-source so you can write your own custom applications. It requires the use of special paper template to work, but once again, they’ve kept us in mind by allowing you to print these templates off on plain paper. No word yet on pricing, though the pen is set to be released sometime in the fall.